Port Of Los Angeles High girls soccer had another magnificent year in 2013-2014, reaching the CIF-Los Angeles City Section Division III semifinals once again, but LACES ended their quest to become champion for the fourth year in a row, ending the Polar Bears' season at a solid 16-4-4 overall.
Despite that, POLA and junior midfielder Isabela Van Antwerp still made it a season to remember.
Van Antwerp, being anointed co-captain alongside fellow junior midfielder Tiffany Torres, broke out with career-highs in 26 goals and 14 assists, both of which led all San Pedro-based schools, while also showing she's not one-dimensional playing tough defense as a sweeper whenever needed. With those marks, it earned Van Antwerp another high honor... the 2014 San Pedro News Pilot Prep Girls Soccer Player Of The Year.
"Scoring 26 goals this year was really great," Van Antwerp said. "The goal for me was just to get as many as I could for my team, even if that meant some assists. I did it with the help of my amazing girls."
Van Antwerp piled up four hat tricks this season all in Crosstown League play, including a four-goal output in a 8-0 win over Animo South Los Angeles on January 24 where she scored three goals in the second half. Her most notable effort came against Long Beach Jordan in the San Pedro Pirate Cup on January 2 at San Pedro High.
Down 2-1 in the closing minutes, Van Antwerp scored the tying and winning goals to pace the Polar Bears to a come-from-behind 3-2 victory in a Pirate Cup pool play game.
"Producing hat tricks are really exciting, but tie breaking goals are my favorite," Van Antwerp said. "Because at the end of the day the goals scored when you play tough teams count more than the ones against the easier teams."
Despite the 1-0 semifinal loss to LACES on February 27, Van Antwerp said she had no regrets on both her individual and team accomplishments this year for the Polar Bears.
"I'm so proud that we made it to the semi's, and really thought we could have taken it all the way," said Van Antwerp, who added it was a thrill being named captain with her best friend Torres. "It was a really close game and could have gone either way, but everyone gave it their all and that's good enough for me."
San Pedro girls soccer made the most remarkable season turnaround of anyone, starting 1-8-1 with a young team in a tough nonleague and Pirate Cup schedule, but still came out of their 2013-2014 season with their ninth straight Marine League championship.
First-year coach Elisa De La Pena-Nagle took the Pirates out of their early obscurity and they were able to win their first eight Marine League games by shutout, before a stunning 3-2 loss to Banning on February 10 ended their 95-game Marine League unbeaten streak (87-0-5). However, sophomore goalie Taylor Miller, senior forwards Jenny Rivera and Julia Fuentes, along with the sudden rise of sophomore midfielder Rianni Gonzales would not allow San Pedro to surrender their Marine League crown.
The Pirates (10-10-1 in 2013-2014) would clinch the league title with a 2-1 win over rival Narbonne of Harbor City on February 12, but their season ended with a 1-1 tie with Bell in the CIF-Los Angeles City Section Division I playoffs on February 20, a game where the Eagles advanced with a 4-2 penalty kick shootout after the Pirates nearly won in sudden death overtime.
Mary Star girls soccer wasn't able to make the CIF-Southern Section playoffs, but UC Santa Barbara-bound forward Jordyn Alves still had another great season, scoring 20 goals to boast her career mark in four years to 69 goals total after signing to play soccer with the Gauchos in early February. Junior forward Dori Lindeman also had a breakout year for the Stars, who finished 7-10-2 overall.
Alves made a lasting impression on December 11 against POLA, where her goal in the 79th minute forged a 2-2 tie with the Polar Bears. Van Antwerp scored both of POLA's goals in that game.
What a year it was for prep girls soccer in San Pedro, and here's the full All-News Pilot selections.
Jordyn Alves (Mary Star), senior
Tiffany Torres (POLA), junior
Daisy Garcia (POLA), sophomore
Rianni Gonzales (San Pedro), sophomore
Jenny Rivera (San Pedro), senior
Samantha Foxworthy (POLA), senior
Dori Lindeman (Mary Star), junior
Julia Fuentes (San Pedro), senior
Samantha Walker (POLA), junior
Melissa Rodriguez (POLA), junior
Ashley Lopez (San Pedro), sophomore
Taylor Garcia (Mary Star), freshman
Alyssa DiMassa (Mary Star), sophomore
Maddie Villela (San Pedro), freshman
Ariella Martinez (POLA), junior
Maddi Pepper (POLA), sophomore
GOALIE OF THE YEAR: Taylor Miller (San Pedro), sophomore
NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR: Anna Vidovich (POLA), freshman
DEFENDER OF THE YEAR: Gabriella Ma (San Pedro), sophomore
PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Isabela Van Antwerp (POLA), junior